This research was supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Grant DA07484 to the third author.
Natural Mentors, Racial Identity, and Educational Attainment Among African American Adolescents: Exploring Pathways to Success
Article first published online: 26 APR 2012
© 2012 The Authors. Child Development © 2012 Society for Research in Child Development, Inc.
Volume 83, Issue 4, pages 1196–1212, July/August 2012
How to Cite
Hurd, N. M., Sánchez, B., Zimmerman, M. A. and Caldwell, C. H. (2012), Natural Mentors, Racial Identity, and Educational Attainment Among African American Adolescents: Exploring Pathways to Success. Child Development, 83: 1196–1212. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8624.2012.01769.x
- Issue published online: 13 JUL 2012
- Article first published online: 26 APR 2012
The present study explored how relationships with natural mentors may contribute to African American adolescents’ long-term educational attainment by influencing adolescents’ racial identity and academic beliefs. This study included 541 academically at-risk African American adolescents transitioning into adulthood. The mean age of participants at Time 1 was 17.8 (SD = .64) and slightly over half (54%) of study participants were female. Results of the current study indicated that relationships with natural mentors promoted more positive long-term educational attainment among participants through increased private regard (a dimension of racial identity) and stronger beliefs in the importance of doing well in school for future success. Implications of these findings and directions for future research are discussed.